Turneffe Atoll Marine Reserve

The Turneffe Atoll Marine Reserve is critical to the protection of Turneffe Atoll and to the effective  long term management of the atoll.   

On November 22, 2012 The Turneffe Atoll Marine Reserve was officially established as Belize’s largest and most diverse Marine Reserve. Trust Atoll Trust played a vital role in this effort and has also been the driving force in establishing a top-quality, stakeholder-based organization to operate this  Reserve, the Turneffe Atoll Sustainability Association (TASA).  

The Turneffe Atoll Sustainability Association is a Belizean non-profit organization whose Board of Directors is made up of 2 commercial fishing leaders (Pedro Alvarez & Llewellyn Smith, 2 tourism representatives (Craig Hayes & Mike Feinstein), 2 doctorate level scientists (Melanie McField & Leandra Cho-Rickets) , a TAT representative (Wil Maheia) and a Turneffe property owner ( Marion Usher). Board Chairman-Craig Hayes, Vice Chairman-Pedro Alvarez, Secretary-Leandra Cho-Rickets, Treasurer-Marion Usher.
History of the Turneffe Atoll Marine Reserve:

In 1993, a detailed Development Plan was submitted to the Government of Belize by McGill.  Later, the Coastal Zone Institute and Authority formed the Turneffe Islands Coastal Advisory Committee to establish Development Guidelines for Turneffe Atoll.  These were submitted to

In June 2010, Turneffe Atoll Trust formed the Turneffe Atoll Sustainability Council to address the need for sustainable management of Turneffe Atoll.  The Sustainability Council elected to pursue a Marine Reserve and Turneffe Atoll Trust  led the efforts to establish the Turneffe Atoll Marine Reserve

In January, 2012, the 280 page Turneffe Atoll Marine Reserve Management Plan, funded by Turneffe Atoll Trust, was  completed and forwarded to the Ministy of Agriculture and Fisheries for presentation to Belize's Cabinet.  Unfortunately,  general elections in Belize delayed the process and the Reserve was placed on hold until the Turneffe Atoll Marine Reserve was officially established in November of 2012.

                         Turneffe Atoll  is the jewel of the Mesoamerican Reef System,
                             the largest coral reef system in the Western Hemispehere